“But how is that even possible? I mean were ‘all’ standing around mere spectators? That’s such a disgrace to the whole humankind. During my times, to quench their aggravated male ego, they would wish to rip a woman off her clothes but now they’ve crossed all limits. That’s sick”
“You wouldn’t believe what’s even sicker, none could know my real name. My name was replaced with either that of a hindi movie’s protagonist ‘damini’ or I was called ‘nirbhaya’ at times. I didn’t really understand the motive behind it all whereas on the other side, they were
all talking out loud about my uterus, vagina and intestines on prime news channels 24*7 .”
Thus stand two victims of male ego who became history.
One is Draupadi and the other, Jyoti Singh aka Nirbhaya.
The writer shall try to bring forward an interesting imaginative conversation between the two
ladies who share with each other their plight, strength and of course, their defeat.
“During our times, male ego wasn’t as fragile as it is today. Though even on that unfortunate day, mightiest of the mighty didn’t come forward to save me. None could gather the courage to protect the swindling of my clothes and also my dignity. The heads I had always seen proud were hanging in shame. The water which rolled their helpless eyes was blood disguised as water. You see, men are good at being hideous (that’s what is a popular notion).
The hands which had always risen either to say a namaskara or to bless me, were replaced by those which were pointing fingers at me and behaving as if I were on auction and they could buy me. The more they insult me, the fairer were their chances of insulting me even more, alas! Karana had already said something alike.”
“ I am glad you still were alive. Ah! How I wanted to live too. I know life would’ve been hard. Harder still because of all the media coverage but atleast I would be with my family, would sleep to my mom’s lullabies and wake up to dad’s gentle taps. They say whatever happens, happens for the good. A lot good did happen. I’m happy about it..”
“Did they kill those animals?” asked an inquisitive Draupadi. So impatient as she felt that time, she couldn’t even wait for Jyoti to finish her sentence. Her eyes glittered and Jyoti didn’t really wish to put that bliss off and only managed to smile. She kept looking at the way Draupadi would stand. The way she lifted her chin up high after everything she said made her looked taller than she actually was and fierceness in her, oh it was nonpareil.
Draupadi however did not settle for Jyoti’s fake smile and wanted her to say it. “ No , they weren’t killed. Instead statements glorifying rape soon started flowing from different corners of the country, mostly from the most highly placed authority.
Some said assaults occur due to excess of chowmein consumption. Others said it is because girls aren’t married at 16 and hence their sexual needs aren’t gratified, for which the society
must retreat to child marriage, yet others suggested women that if they can’t stop a rape, they must enjoy it.” said Jyoti with an unprecedented calm.
“ Why would you say you are happy then ?” asked Draupadi completely baffled. Jyoti, with a slight smile on her face said, at least now women know that the so called modernity itself is patriarchal.
Both the ladies sat beside each other, downhearted, as they could neither find peace on looking retrospectively nor could their thoughts of being hopeful about the future and find any solace.
After about an hour, when both the women were entangled in the vicious maze of the reality, there came a voice. Whether it was from the skies above them or the ones below which echoed more, they couldn’t really decide but the voice was feminine,
“ Women aren’t as frail and inadequate as you think they are. Trust me they are taking on the world. Don’t you forget , one woman is enough to shake the society out of its sleep and felicitate women with an incomparable power of will and muscle. If you don’t trust me, look at each other and decide for yourself. It’s high time all women, worldly or unearthly realise that they are mightier than the mightiest.”
The voice of Durga gave them power to shed off their sorrow and hope for a safer, better and brighter future for all the women.
Through this imaginative piece I wish to draw attention towards a reality which is worse than the worst nightmare. Be it Draupadi or Nirbhaya or the writer herself, no woman is spared the ‘daily sexual assault’. I wonder if any change at all has taken place in the situation of women.
Yes, of course they can vote (for an election symbol that the patriarchs instruct them to vote for), yes she can study now ( but so could Gargi 2000 years ago), she can wear the clothes she like, can eat what she likes and do anything that she likes but mind you, the likings of a woman with a ‘good’ character are different from that of ‘cheap witch’.
The important question, who decides what is ‘right’? Who decide what kind of clothes are worn by women of a high character? Who decides which shade of ‘red’ lipstick is subtle?
It’s time we all stop becoming those ostriches which prefer keeping their heads buried under the sand. Just one suggestion to all the patriarchs, spare us the sermon of righteousness because at all, who decides what’s right?
Edited by Mrinaal Datt
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